I want to stop a manic/ depressive episode happening
About 18 months ago now, i had a depressive year and eventually tried suicide, during the year i had periods where i was so so happy i thought i could rule the world. But when it came to my diagnoses i did not see that there was any problem when i was hyper as i was happy so when the psychiatrist asked me did i get highs and lows i just said lows as to me they were the only problem, little did i know it is now one of my most annoying traits, so i got diagnosed with depression.
I got put on meds but a couple of weeks after starting the meds I got another episode of mania, its brilliant during but horrible after especially when they are mixed. All this year i have been up and down fighting the depression and then trying to fight the mania as thats equally as bad now when i look back.
But now I am at university and i can spot the signs of when i know its coming – less and less sleep, irratible, aggressive, really hyper, not a care in the world.
The problem is im away and before I knew the right ways to seek help.
Now i guess the question is how do i prevent it? ive never been diagnosed with bi-polar, i don’t want to be to be honest but its been two weeks now of these symptoms and i know what’s coming.
If i cant prevent it what do i do when it comes -well i wont even know its hit me until after but what do i tell people or who do i go tell now?
A: I really hope you will give yourself some credit for recognizing the problem. I understand why you didn’t want to tell your doctor the whole story but you may have inadvertently made your problems worse. Since your doctor didn’t know about all your symptoms, he concluded you were depressed and prescribed antidepressants. The trouble is sometimes antidepressants trigger manic symptoms in a person with bipolar illness!
Hypomania does feel wonderful so it’s not uncommon for people in that state to either minimize what’s going on or to deny it. I commend you for finally facing what happens to you. The way you head off a manic episode is to get yourself to a psychiatrist and be absolutely honest about ALL your symptoms to the very best of your ability. If you do have bipolar illness, there are medications that can help you control your mood swings. In addition, some focused talk therapy will help you learn new skills for managing your moods.
I also recommend that you read Scattershot, A memoir by David Lovelace. I think reading his story about coming to terms with his bipolar illness and learning to manage it will comfort and inspire you.
I wish you well.
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2009). I want to stop a manic/ depressive episode happening. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 7, 2015, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2009/11/26/i-want-to-stop-a-manic-depressive-episode-happening/